Go to contents

Seoul mayor proposes to create a community among Northeast Asian cities

Seoul mayor proposes to create a community among Northeast Asian cities

Posted October. 01, 2015 21:42,   


“If I walk on the streets of Mongolia, everybody will mistake me for a Mongolian. Cities in Northeast Asia, which have similar race, history and culture, should join hands together going beyond borders of nations,” said Seoul Mayor Park Won-soon, proposing to create a community of Northeast Asian cities at the 2nd North-East Asia Mayors` Forum held in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, on Sept. 21. Park`s proposal aims to create a community of cities in Northeast Asia, which are close to each other in geology and culture, to jointly deal with common issues in areas of environment, climate change and economy.

At the forum under the theme of green growth of Northeast Asian cities, some 200 participants including mayors from cities of 10 nations such as China, Japan and Russia, and officials from 20 international organizations such as the Asia Development Bank and the United Nations Development Program, gathered together.

“The nations in the world are creating regional cross-border communities such as the European Union (EU) and the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). There is no reason why Northeast Asian cities cannot create a regional community,” said Park in his opening speech at the forum. “Cities in Northeast Asia are located close to each other, at a distance of a few hours flight, and share similar historical and cultural background. Starting with joint responses to environmental issues and climate change, the cities must seek a way for peace and coexistence in Northeast Asia, and for an economic community."

Seoul Mayor Park introduced green policies such as solar power generation and the campaign to reduce nuclear power plants, which the metropolitan city pursues. “It is hard to improve the air quality by Seoul’s efforts alone. It is necessary to lay the foundation for joint cooperation and implementation system among cities in Northeast Asia. Please join us to reduce the amount of greenhouse gas and make sustainable cities,” said Park, asking for other cities’ cooperation.

In the morning on the same day, Mayor Park met with Ulaanbaatar Mayor Erdeniin Bat-Üül to discuss ways to exchange policies in areas of smart city, transportation and public housing. Ulaanbaatar, the capital of Mongolia, is the nation’s biggest city where half of the total population (2.99 million) resides. “Mayor Bat-Üül and I have similar experiences of participating in democratization movement. I hope to build a long-standing relationship between Seoul and Ulaanbaatar, which can last for 50 years and even a century,” said Park.